Anthony Cailan, prominent LA sommelier and brother to Eggslut chef Alvin Cailan, has been accused of sexual assault by multiple women, according to a report in the New York Times. Anthony Cailan, who denies the allegations, was previously the wine director of the now-closed Hayden in Culver City and also worked at Bestia, Animal, and Eggslut. Most recently Anthony Cailan helped open the Usual restaurant in New York City alongside his brother Alvin, who is the chef. Just last month Anthony Cailan appeared on the cover of Wine & Spirits Magazine after being named one of the country’s best new sommeliers.
Raquel Makler, who had worked with Cailan at Hayden and moved to New York City to pursue a position at the Usual, detailed an incident where Cailan invited her to his apartment late one evening, forcibly kissed her, touched her, and repeatedly attempted to penetrate her. Sarah Fernandez, who was a wine sales representative, said Cailan also invited her to his apartment, became sexually aggressive, and pushed his hands up her skirt despite her objections. Fernandez told the Times, “He kept putting his hands on my thighs, he kept trying to get into my underwear. He would not take no for an answer.”
Two other women, who spoke under a condition of anonymity because they believed their careers would suffer if they spoke openly against Cailan, described similar incidents of an invitation to his apartment and subsequent sexual aggression.
When the Times asked him for comment, Anthony Cailan said, “The truth is, these allegations against me are false. I look forward to the opportunity to clear my name.”
Those in the Los Angeles wine community had heard of incidents related to Cailan, asking him to stay away from their workplaces. Along with five former coworkers, Domaine LA wine shop owner Jill Bernheimer sent an email in January of this year writing “We’ve heard stories of you being inappropriate with women in a way that makes us deeply uncomfortable.” In a response, Cailan asked Bernheimer to specify any allegations against him.
Anthony’s brother Alvin, who founded Eggslut in Los Angeles and has opened multiple restaurants such as Easy’s and Ramen Champ, wrote in a text regarding the allegations: “There’s nothing for me to comment.”